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What Size Mash Tun Fot 20l Batches

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duo4207

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Hey guy's just looking at making an All Grain set up im just trying to sort out what size mash tun is the most suitable and what you would recommend ??!? I have also been thinking which of the two types would be best whether it be the esky cooler set up, or the horizontal drink cooler type ill link some pictures below if you don't understand what I'm saying. best size for 20L batches.... any help would be much appreciated.



 

Yob

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I use a willow 44lt esky... a bit too small for doubles (maybe) but is great for single batches..

Id go something like THIS SIZE but get one with a tap in it.

plan ahead.. you will, at some point want to do doubles (most likely)

Yob
 

duo4207

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thnx mate good point ! do you still manage to pull of doubles in your 44lt unit?
 

bignath

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no problems doing doubles with a mash tun around 40lt. Unless your doing some crazy ABV beer, or you've got shit efficiency.

My 3V rig utilises a 38lt Coleman (higher than it's width) esky and no problems doing double batches with it. Unless i'm brewing something i've never brewed before, i ONLY ever brew double batches.

I mash in at 3:1 Liquor to grain ratio, drain mash tun then sparge. Depending on beer im making, sometimes requires a small second sparge (maybe 5lt's or so) but otherwise, filling two kegs at the end of the ferment with 83% efficiency is very doable with a 38lt coleman.

Bigger than that and you get a whole lot of headroom, but it is certainly doable...
 

Lord Raja Goomba I

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I use a 25L esky for a mash tun (one of those willow blue ones), and use a bucket in bucket lauter (look at my sig for the thread, with pics) for lautering and 2 x 19L big w pots (which I already had) for the stovetop boiling.

I've got 30L out of it, but consistently do 25L in it, and comfortably make it.

Goomba
 

iralosavic

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While it makes sense to plan ahead and prepare for double batches, you could be like me and be one of the few who will never bother with them. Hell, if the occasion arises once in a blue moon, I'll just invite a mate around, put something entertaining on the TV and brew two back to back. I have two kegs on tap and try to keep another two ready to interchange at all times, but it's usually just me drinking them, so even 18L of the same beer gets a bit boring in the time it takes me to drink it. HOWEVER, if you already have a boil kettle big enough for double batches, you might as well get a mash tun to suit the maximum capacity of that.

You should look into the work and costs of the plumbing/false bottom setups for horizontal vs vertical and decide for yourself. My 2c: vertical is easier/cheaper to slap together, but horizontal has the benefit of a lower profile allowing an better posture while overlooking it (good for mash-in, stirring and monitoring etc). I've not made either, so take my comments as such, but this is what I've concluded from looking into it myself. I'm BIAB for now, but based my BIAB vessle on a HLT to suit the move to a 3v system - if I even bother, as my efficiency is already good.

And to answer your question more directly (sorry!) the 36L rubbermaid clone would be plenty big enough for 20L batches - and an equivalent volume in an esky would too, but you've got many more options with eskies, where larger volumes remain cheaper.
 

NickB

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I would certainly look ahead to doubles as well, but I started with a Willow 25L (As LRG has) for singles no problem at all.

These usually pop up on special at coles/kmart for less than $30...

Cheers
 

iralosavic

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A little off topic, but how do you guys get through enough beer to justify double batches? Maybe I need more friends? haha I'm at that inbetween point in life between being ditched by all the non-parent friends and forging new friendships with other new dads. I'm also of the age where binge drinking doesn't come naturally anymore. Ahh the good old days.
 

NickB

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Cubes :)

EDIT: And 11 kegs to fill!
 

DUANNE

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i use a 36 litre round cooler setup and have no problems doing every thing up to a 11 percent all malt barley wine. all it takes is some work arounds such as on a bigger beer or double batch space is tight so instead of an infusion up to mash out do a quick decoction and go with a slightly lower liquor/grist ratio, and if you are going batch sparge it may take several sparges instead of one. as for doing 20 litre batches i find even this size to large for 1040 type beers with a lot of head space above the mash, to make up for this i just use a piece of camp mat cut to size on top of the mash to hold the temp losses back.for my brewing wich is mostly 1040-1060 single batches any thing bigger would be more of a problem than the stuff arounds on the rare big beers or doubles.
 

stux

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Hey guy's just looking at making an All Grain set up im just trying to sort out what size mash tun is the most suitable and what you would recommend ??!? I have also been thinking which of the two types would be best whether it be the esky cooler set up, or the horizontal drink cooler type ill link some pictures below if you don't understand what I'm saying. best size for 20L batches.... any help would be much appreciated.



Have you considered BIAB?
 

bignath

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A little off topic, but how do you guys get through enough beer to justify double batches? Maybe I need more friends? haha I'm at that inbetween point in life between being ditched by all the non-parent friends and forging new friendships with other new dads. I'm also of the age where binge drinking doesn't come naturally anymore. Ahh the good old days.
Young dad myself (two kids, one little bloke 6yo, one little princess 5yo). But im also a musician and professional music tutor for a living, so i've grown up doing gigs and spending a fair bit of time in pubs over the 36years i've spent on this planet.
Im a big guy naturally, and i have no problem in putting away multiple pints on any given night of the week. I only drink from 425ml glasses, and it's not uncommon for me to take 8-10 trips to my taps on a weeknight and front up to work the next day as though nothing out of the ordinary occured.
For the record, im not bragging, or even happy with this ability as it's not healthy at all, and in fact im cutting back lately to maybe 2-3 beers a day, but my consumption is what it is...

Very easy for me to blow a keg in a week by myself, so it's not just easy for me to justify brewing doubles, it's almost necessary. Only takes a few social events and my stocks can take a serious belting, particularly in the festive season. I have six kegs, and enough bottles for maybe 4 or 5 single batches.

Seriously, if it was me, i'd be happy i didn't have to brew double batches, both for health and logistical reasons.


cheers,

tryingtocutbackBigNath
 

stux

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At the quickest personal consumption I can go through a keg in 2.5 weeks. BUT At most social things that we put on a keg will take a hit, or 3.

Since beer takes me 3 weeks to make (2 weeks primary, 1 week cold), its quite simple math that single batches don't cut it :)

I've done back to back to back singles before, brewing every other week, running two fermenters at once, but that just *barely* can keep us up, and I spent a whole season building up supply to have it decimated over christmas to the point where I had *no* beer.

So, now I'm doing triples... and I think this is the ticket ;)
 

duo4207

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thanks every one for the input i guess i have a bit to consider over the next few days, and yes i have considered BIAB but id like to give this way a go... thanks every one !!
 

iralosavic

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Nath: you started around the sane age as me. I have one 16 month brute and a 6 week little brother and I'm 30. The missus needs all the help I can give her when I'm home as they are both a handful. You drink like I used to.. 8-12 stubbies on most work nights. Back when I lived with a mate who loved beer even more than me. Its hard enough to get away with a brew day guilt free, let alone find the time to myself to drink half as much as I used to. I don't mind though - I personally enjoy just having a couple of pints every other day and the fact that it's on tap makes it one less thing to guilt me with. The lack if recycling means it never happened :D

As for cubing double batches ready to go, now that's an idea, but I lack the fridge space anyway.

To add something on topic, think of it this way: the average grain bill for a 5% 20L batch will be around 5kg. Assuming a grain absorbsion of 8% and a water:grain ratio of 3:1, you're looking at something like 20L max. (I suddenly got lazy and guessed, but you get the point!)
 

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